Hull (watercraft)

Hull form lines, lengthwise and in cross-section

A hull is the watertight body of a ship or boat. The hull may open at the top (such as a dinghy), or it may be fully or partially covered with a deck. Atop the deck may be a deckhouse and other superstructures, such as a funnel, derrick, or mast. The line where the hull meets the water surface is called the waterline.

General features

There is a wide variety of hull types that are chosen for suitability for different usages, the hull shape being dependent upon the needs of the design. Shapes range from a nearly perfect box in the case of scow barges, to a needle-sharp surface of revolution in the case of a racing multihull sailboat. The shape is chosen to strike a balance between cost, hydrostatic considerations (accommodation, load carrying and stability), hydrodynamics (speed, power requirements, and motion and behavior in a seaway) and special considerations for the ship's role, such as the rounded bow of an icebreaker or the flat bottom of a landing craft.

In a typical modern steel ship, the hull will have watertight decks, and major transverse members called bulkheads. There may also be intermediate members such as girders, stringers and webs, and minor members called ordinary transverse frames, frames, or longitudinals, depending on the structural arrangement. The uppermost continuous deck may be called the "upper deck", "weather deck", "spar deck", "main deck", or simply "deck". The particular name given depends on the context—the type of ship or boat, the arrangement, or even where it sails.

In a typical wooden sailboat, the hull is constructed of wooden planking, supported by transverse frames (often referred to as ribs) and bulkheads, which are further tied together by longitudinal stringers or ceiling. Often but not always there is a centerline longitudinal member called a keel. In fiberglass or composite hulls, the structure may resemble wooden or steel vessels to some extent, or be of a monocoque arrangement. In many cases, composite hulls are built by sandwiching thin fiber-reinforced skins over a lightweight but reasonably rigid core of foam, balsa wood, impregnated paper honeycomb or other material.

Perhaps the earliest proper hulls were built by the Ancient Egyptians, who by 3000 BC knew how to assemble wooden planks into a hull.[1]

Other Languages
български: Корпус на кораб
dansk: Skrog
Deutsch: Schiffsrumpf
eesti: Laevakere
Ελληνικά: Ύφαλα
Esperanto: Korpo (ŝipo)
euskara: Krosko
français: Coque (bateau)
한국어: 선체
hrvatski: Trup broda
Bahasa Indonesia: Lambung kapal
íslenska: Skipsskrokkur
italiano: Scafo
latviešu: Korpuss (kuģa)
Bahasa Melayu: Badan kapal
Nederlands: Scheepsromp
日本語: 船体
português: Casco (navio)
русский: Корпус судна
sicilianu: Carina
Simple English: Hull (watercraft)
svenska: Skrov
українська: Корпус судна
中文: 船体